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Readers discuss The Oklahoman's role in state's history and future

Readers of The Oklahoman talked about their daily newspaper's vital role in shaping Oklahoma and passionate hopes for the newspaper's future Tuesday during a luncheon that featured frank discussions about the financial challenges facing the newspaper.

The Oklahoman has an opportunity to become a national leader in promoting civil discourse, suggested former state House Speaker Kris Steele, who has been a community leader in promoting civil justice reform.

Houses of worship are interacting with their neighborhoods in creative new ways and people would like to read about that, said Jon Middendorf, senior pastor of the Oklahoma City First Church of the Nazarene.

Cultural opportunities are exploding all around Oklahoma City. The Oklahoman needs to write more about them, suggested another reader.

Soliciting ideas from about 100 readers on what issues the newsroom should focus on in 2019 was one of Kelly Dyer Fry's first acts as publisher of The Oklahoman.

Fry has been editor and vice president of news at the newspaper for a long time, but was given the additional title of publisher Tuesday morning by GateHouse Media, which purchased The Oklahoman on Oct. 1.

In a candid speech to loyal readers, Fry acknowledged knowing that many readers weren't happy that the size of the newspaper has shrunk recently, but said that change was needed to return the newspaper to profitability — a goal which has been accomplished.

"I've heard that a few of you grumbled recently that it's just too small," Fry said. "Today our community supports us at the level you see in today's paper."

That doesn't mean it always has to be this way, she said.

"I have witnessed this community move mountains. When we unite, when we stand shoulder to shoulder, we get it done — tornadoes, the bombing, we know how to work together," Fry said.

"What we make of our newspaper is up to us. I'll say it today and I'll say it repeatedly. Our strength and quality is commensurate with the level of support we get from our community."

Newspapers throughout the country have been facing financial challenges due to declining advertising revenue, which once accounted for more than 80 percent of The Oklahoman's revenues but now account for less than 50 percent.

Bob Blackburn, executive director of the Oklahoma Historical Society, said that for more than 100 years The Oklahoman has played a vital role in recording and shaping the state's history.

Blackburn credited The Oklahoman with leading the charge for numerous positive changes, including support for construction of what is now Tinker Air Force Base and MAPS downtown redevelopment projects.

He also credited the newspaper with helping expose the Oklahoma Supreme Court bribery scandal in the 1950s and 1960s, which led to changes in how justices are selected, and with exposing the county commissioners scandal in the 1980s, which led to purchasing reforms.

"If we are to remain a vibrant community, I truly believe with all my heart that we have got to have a strong, independent vigorous newspaper that has the resources to investigate, to report, to share that message," Blackburn said. "We have to have everyone there to do their job so the rest of us in our community can do our job, which is to build a better community for our children and grandchildren."

Related Photos
<p>J.D. Baker shares feedback on Tuesday about The Oklahoman at an Oklahoma City luncheon sponsored by the newspaper, while reporter Ben Felder holds the microphone. [Photo by Jim Beckel, The Oklahoman]</p>
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J.D. Baker shares feedback on Tuesday about The Oklahoman at an Oklahoma City luncheon sponsored by the newspaper, while reporter Ben Felder holds the microphone. [Photo by Jim Beckel, The Oklahoman]  

<figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-05fbffe5d67c24a66c675232a009f284.jpg" alt="Photo - J.D. Baker shares feedback on Tuesday about The Oklahoman at an Oklahoma City luncheon sponsored by the newspaper, while reporter Ben Felder holds the microphone. [Photo by Jim Beckel, The Oklahoman]   " title=" J.D. Baker shares feedback on Tuesday about The Oklahoman at an Oklahoma City luncheon sponsored by the newspaper, while reporter Ben Felder holds the microphone. [Photo by Jim Beckel, The Oklahoman]   "><figcaption> J.D. Baker shares feedback on Tuesday about The Oklahoman at an Oklahoma City luncheon sponsored by the newspaper, while reporter Ben Felder holds the microphone. [Photo by Jim Beckel, The Oklahoman]   </figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-67ce699834e6841b27c342dd48db3498.jpg" alt="Photo - Bob Blackburn talks to the audience about the importance of newspapers in recording the history of a community and a state, and its critical role in serving as a common bond for its citizens. Blackburn is executive director of the Oklahoma Historical Society. Readers of The Oklahoman talked about their daily newspaper's history and hopes for its future Tuesday, Dec. 18, 2018, during a State of the Media luncheon that included frank discussions of the financial challenges facing the newspaper and entire news industry. Photo by Jim Beckel, The Oklahoman. " title="Bob Blackburn talks to the audience about the importance of newspapers in recording the history of a community and a state, and its critical role in serving as a common bond for its citizens. Blackburn is executive director of the Oklahoma Historical Society. Readers of The Oklahoman talked about their daily newspaper's history and hopes for its future Tuesday, Dec. 18, 2018, during a State of the Media luncheon that included frank discussions of the financial challenges facing the newspaper and entire news industry. Photo by Jim Beckel, The Oklahoman. "><figcaption>Bob Blackburn talks to the audience about the importance of newspapers in recording the history of a community and a state, and its critical role in serving as a common bond for its citizens. Blackburn is executive director of the Oklahoma Historical Society. Readers of The Oklahoman talked about their daily newspaper's history and hopes for its future Tuesday, Dec. 18, 2018, during a State of the Media luncheon that included frank discussions of the financial challenges facing the newspaper and entire news industry. Photo by Jim Beckel, The Oklahoman. </figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-cbcce6f98f0b438019057976e9c0ed67.jpg" alt="Photo - Jim Hopson and Kelly Dyer Fry visit after the event. Hopson has served as interim publisher of The Oklahoman until Tuesday, when he announced Fry would be named the newspaper's new publisher. Readers of The Oklahoman talked about their daily newspaper's history and hopes for its future Tuesday, Dec. 18, 2018, during a State of the Media luncheon that included frank discussions of the financial challenges facing the newspaper and entire news industry. Photo by Jim Beckel, The Oklahoman. " title="Jim Hopson and Kelly Dyer Fry visit after the event. Hopson has served as interim publisher of The Oklahoman until Tuesday, when he announced Fry would be named the newspaper's new publisher. Readers of The Oklahoman talked about their daily newspaper's history and hopes for its future Tuesday, Dec. 18, 2018, during a State of the Media luncheon that included frank discussions of the financial challenges facing the newspaper and entire news industry. Photo by Jim Beckel, The Oklahoman. "><figcaption>Jim Hopson and Kelly Dyer Fry visit after the event. Hopson has served as interim publisher of The Oklahoman until Tuesday, when he announced Fry would be named the newspaper's new publisher. Readers of The Oklahoman talked about their daily newspaper's history and hopes for its future Tuesday, Dec. 18, 2018, during a State of the Media luncheon that included frank discussions of the financial challenges facing the newspaper and entire news industry. Photo by Jim Beckel, The Oklahoman. </figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-491396809aa66d3c96003c31440afcca.jpg" alt="Photo - Kelly Dyer Fry, left, is hugged by Jenny Herzberger after the event. Fry was named publisher of The Oklahoman earlier in the day. Readers of The Oklahoman talked about their daily newspaper's history and hopes for its future Tuesday, Dec. 18, 2018, during a State of the Media luncheon that included frank discussions of the financial challenges facing the newspaper and entire news industry. Photo by Jim Beckel, The Oklahoman. " title="Kelly Dyer Fry, left, is hugged by Jenny Herzberger after the event. Fry was named publisher of The Oklahoman earlier in the day. Readers of The Oklahoman talked about their daily newspaper's history and hopes for its future Tuesday, Dec. 18, 2018, during a State of the Media luncheon that included frank discussions of the financial challenges facing the newspaper and entire news industry. Photo by Jim Beckel, The Oklahoman. "><figcaption>Kelly Dyer Fry, left, is hugged by Jenny Herzberger after the event. Fry was named publisher of The Oklahoman earlier in the day. Readers of The Oklahoman talked about their daily newspaper's history and hopes for its future Tuesday, Dec. 18, 2018, during a State of the Media luncheon that included frank discussions of the financial challenges facing the newspaper and entire news industry. Photo by Jim Beckel, The Oklahoman. </figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-d6cccf2590e776a90ad02b02329183f8.jpg" alt="Photo - Reporter Ben Felder, standing right, holds a microphone as a guest shares feedback from group discussion at his table. Readers of The Oklahoman talked about their daily newspaper's history and hopes for its future Tuesday, Dec. 18, 2018, during a State of the Media luncheon that included frank discussions of the financial challenges facing the newspaper and entire news industry. Photo by Jim Beckel, The Oklahoman. " title="Reporter Ben Felder, standing right, holds a microphone as a guest shares feedback from group discussion at his table. Readers of The Oklahoman talked about their daily newspaper's history and hopes for its future Tuesday, Dec. 18, 2018, during a State of the Media luncheon that included frank discussions of the financial challenges facing the newspaper and entire news industry. Photo by Jim Beckel, The Oklahoman. "><figcaption>Reporter Ben Felder, standing right, holds a microphone as a guest shares feedback from group discussion at his table. Readers of The Oklahoman talked about their daily newspaper's history and hopes for its future Tuesday, Dec. 18, 2018, during a State of the Media luncheon that included frank discussions of the financial challenges facing the newspaper and entire news industry. Photo by Jim Beckel, The Oklahoman. </figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-0790d4b14657a5a9fa68c31769252864.jpg" alt="Photo - These packets were on the seat of every chair when guests arrived. Readers of The Oklahoman talked about their daily newspaper's history and hopes for its future Tuesday, Dec. 18, 2018, during a State of the Media luncheon that included frank discussions of the financial challenges facing the newspaper and entire news industry. Photo by Jim Beckel, The Oklahoman. " title="These packets were on the seat of every chair when guests arrived. Readers of The Oklahoman talked about their daily newspaper's history and hopes for its future Tuesday, Dec. 18, 2018, during a State of the Media luncheon that included frank discussions of the financial challenges facing the newspaper and entire news industry. Photo by Jim Beckel, The Oklahoman. "><figcaption>These packets were on the seat of every chair when guests arrived. Readers of The Oklahoman talked about their daily newspaper's history and hopes for its future Tuesday, Dec. 18, 2018, during a State of the Media luncheon that included frank discussions of the financial challenges facing the newspaper and entire news industry. Photo by Jim Beckel, The Oklahoman. </figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-7b4771bbe6bf414710f31251f590bf1d.jpg" alt="Photo - Reporter Steve Lackmeyer, right, talks with Robert J Ross, left, and Bob Blackburn before the program started. Ross is president and CEO of Inasmuch Foundation. Blackburn is executive director at the Oklahoma Historical Society. Readers of The Oklahoman talked about their daily newspaper's history and hopes for its future Tuesday, Dec. 18, 2018, during a State of the Media luncheon that included frank discussions of the financial challenges facing the newspaper and entire news industry. Photo by Jim Beckel, The Oklahoman. " title="Reporter Steve Lackmeyer, right, talks with Robert J Ross, left, and Bob Blackburn before the program started. Ross is president and CEO of Inasmuch Foundation. Blackburn is executive director at the Oklahoma Historical Society. Readers of The Oklahoman talked about their daily newspaper's history and hopes for its future Tuesday, Dec. 18, 2018, during a State of the Media luncheon that included frank discussions of the financial challenges facing the newspaper and entire news industry. Photo by Jim Beckel, The Oklahoman. "><figcaption>Reporter Steve Lackmeyer, right, talks with Robert J Ross, left, and Bob Blackburn before the program started. Ross is president and CEO of Inasmuch Foundation. Blackburn is executive director at the Oklahoma Historical Society. Readers of The Oklahoman talked about their daily newspaper's history and hopes for its future Tuesday, Dec. 18, 2018, during a State of the Media luncheon that included frank discussions of the financial challenges facing the newspaper and entire news industry. Photo by Jim Beckel, The Oklahoman. </figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-8a0d074de11152348e75fb79e02f6cde.jpg" alt="Photo - Adam Soltani provides feedback to The Oklahoman publisher Kelly Dyer Fry at the event. Soltani is executive director of the Council on American-Islamic Relations in Oklahoma City. At right is reporter Ben Felder. Readers of The Oklahoman talked about their daily newspaper's history and hopes for its future Tuesday, Dec. 18, 2018, during a State of the Media luncheon that included frank discussions of the financial challenges facing the newspaper and entire news industry. Photo by Jim Beckel, The Oklahoman. " title="Adam Soltani provides feedback to The Oklahoman publisher Kelly Dyer Fry at the event. Soltani is executive director of the Council on American-Islamic Relations in Oklahoma City. At right is reporter Ben Felder. Readers of The Oklahoman talked about their daily newspaper's history and hopes for its future Tuesday, Dec. 18, 2018, during a State of the Media luncheon that included frank discussions of the financial challenges facing the newspaper and entire news industry. Photo by Jim Beckel, The Oklahoman. "><figcaption>Adam Soltani provides feedback to The Oklahoman publisher Kelly Dyer Fry at the event. Soltani is executive director of the Council on American-Islamic Relations in Oklahoma City. At right is reporter Ben Felder. Readers of The Oklahoman talked about their daily newspaper's history and hopes for its future Tuesday, Dec. 18, 2018, during a State of the Media luncheon that included frank discussions of the financial challenges facing the newspaper and entire news industry. Photo by Jim Beckel, The Oklahoman. </figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-6537f93c21524cde11af1ab22c850b15.jpg" alt="Photo - Readers of The Oklahoman talked about their daily newspaper's history and hopes for its future Tuesday, Dec. 18, 2018, during a State of the Media luncheon that included frank discussions of the financial challenges facing the newspaper and entire news industry. Photo by Jim Beckel, The Oklahoman. " title="Readers of The Oklahoman talked about their daily newspaper's history and hopes for its future Tuesday, Dec. 18, 2018, during a State of the Media luncheon that included frank discussions of the financial challenges facing the newspaper and entire news industry. Photo by Jim Beckel, The Oklahoman. "><figcaption>Readers of The Oklahoman talked about their daily newspaper's history and hopes for its future Tuesday, Dec. 18, 2018, during a State of the Media luncheon that included frank discussions of the financial challenges facing the newspaper and entire news industry. Photo by Jim Beckel, The Oklahoman. </figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-56a520c44c2526ef0be9cbb8293f158f.jpg" alt="Photo - Senior reporter Randy Ellis, center, visits with attorney Bob Nelon, left, and Brian Walter of Kingfisher. Readers of The Oklahoman talked about their daily newspaper's history and hopes for its future Tuesday, Dec. 18, 2018, during a luncheon that included frank discussions of the financial challenges facing the newspaper and entire news industry. Photo by Jim Beckel, The Oklahoman. " title="Senior reporter Randy Ellis, center, visits with attorney Bob Nelon, left, and Brian Walter of Kingfisher. Readers of The Oklahoman talked about their daily newspaper's history and hopes for its future Tuesday, Dec. 18, 2018, during a luncheon that included frank discussions of the financial challenges facing the newspaper and entire news industry. Photo by Jim Beckel, The Oklahoman. "><figcaption>Senior reporter Randy Ellis, center, visits with attorney Bob Nelon, left, and Brian Walter of Kingfisher. Readers of The Oklahoman talked about their daily newspaper's history and hopes for its future Tuesday, Dec. 18, 2018, during a luncheon that included frank discussions of the financial challenges facing the newspaper and entire news industry. Photo by Jim Beckel, The Oklahoman. </figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-46c6d23a00273ee6a7126fb644a22da6.jpg" alt="Photo - Bob Blackburn talks to the audience about the importance of newspapers in recording the history of a community and a state, and its critical role in serving as a common bond for its citizens. Blackburn is executive director of the Oklahoma Historical Society. Readers of The Oklahoman talked about their daily newspaper's history and hopes for its future Tuesday, Dec. 18, 2018, during a State of the Media luncheon that included frank discussions of the financial challenges facing the newspaper and entire news industry. Photo by Jim Beckel, The Oklahoman. " title="Bob Blackburn talks to the audience about the importance of newspapers in recording the history of a community and a state, and its critical role in serving as a common bond for its citizens. Blackburn is executive director of the Oklahoma Historical Society. Readers of The Oklahoman talked about their daily newspaper's history and hopes for its future Tuesday, Dec. 18, 2018, during a State of the Media luncheon that included frank discussions of the financial challenges facing the newspaper and entire news industry. Photo by Jim Beckel, The Oklahoman. "><figcaption>Bob Blackburn talks to the audience about the importance of newspapers in recording the history of a community and a state, and its critical role in serving as a common bond for its citizens. Blackburn is executive director of the Oklahoma Historical Society. Readers of The Oklahoman talked about their daily newspaper's history and hopes for its future Tuesday, Dec. 18, 2018, during a State of the Media luncheon that included frank discussions of the financial challenges facing the newspaper and entire news industry. Photo by Jim Beckel, The Oklahoman. </figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-cbb4e72288acb4f4b903a71c13c6aa44.jpg" alt="Photo - Kelly Dyer Fry tells the audiences the modern day challenges of publishing a daily newspaper. Fry was named publisher of The Oklahoman Tuesday morning. Readers of The Oklahoman talked about their daily newspaper's history and hopes for its future Tuesday, Dec. 18, 2018, during a State of the Media luncheon that included frank discussions of the financial challenges facing the newspaper and entire news industry. Photo by Jim Beckel, The Oklahoman. " title="Kelly Dyer Fry tells the audiences the modern day challenges of publishing a daily newspaper. Fry was named publisher of The Oklahoman Tuesday morning. Readers of The Oklahoman talked about their daily newspaper's history and hopes for its future Tuesday, Dec. 18, 2018, during a State of the Media luncheon that included frank discussions of the financial challenges facing the newspaper and entire news industry. Photo by Jim Beckel, The Oklahoman. "><figcaption>Kelly Dyer Fry tells the audiences the modern day challenges of publishing a daily newspaper. Fry was named publisher of The Oklahoman Tuesday morning. Readers of The Oklahoman talked about their daily newspaper's history and hopes for its future Tuesday, Dec. 18, 2018, during a State of the Media luncheon that included frank discussions of the financial challenges facing the newspaper and entire news industry. Photo by Jim Beckel, The Oklahoman. </figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-dc8f2e2e3c0d60dec3d3e34543cea201.jpg" alt="Photo - Kelly Dyer Fry smiles as she walks to the microphone after being introduced to the audience as the new publisher of The Oklahoman by Jim Hopson, right, who had served as the newspaper's interim publisher until Tuesday. Readers of The Oklahoman talked about their daily newspaper's history and hopes for its future Tuesday, Dec. 18, 2018, during a State of the Media luncheon that included frank discussions of the financial challenges facing the newspaper and entire news industry. Photo by Jim Beckel, The Oklahoman. " title="Kelly Dyer Fry smiles as she walks to the microphone after being introduced to the audience as the new publisher of The Oklahoman by Jim Hopson, right, who had served as the newspaper's interim publisher until Tuesday. Readers of The Oklahoman talked about their daily newspaper's history and hopes for its future Tuesday, Dec. 18, 2018, during a State of the Media luncheon that included frank discussions of the financial challenges facing the newspaper and entire news industry. Photo by Jim Beckel, The Oklahoman. "><figcaption>Kelly Dyer Fry smiles as she walks to the microphone after being introduced to the audience as the new publisher of The Oklahoman by Jim Hopson, right, who had served as the newspaper's interim publisher until Tuesday. Readers of The Oklahoman talked about their daily newspaper's history and hopes for its future Tuesday, Dec. 18, 2018, during a State of the Media luncheon that included frank discussions of the financial challenges facing the newspaper and entire news industry. Photo by Jim Beckel, The Oklahoman. </figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-872ef4aff2ee5285e22312feda126400.jpg" alt="Photo - Kelly Dyer Fry smiles as she shakes the hand of Jim Hopson after he introduced her to the audience as the new publisher of The Oklahoman. Hopson had served as the newspaper's interim publisher until Tuesday. Readers of The Oklahoman talked about their daily newspaper's history and hopes for its future Tuesday, Dec. 18, 2018, during a State of the Media luncheon that included frank discussions of the financial challenges facing the newspaper and entire news industry. Photo by Jim Beckel, The Oklahoman. " title="Kelly Dyer Fry smiles as she shakes the hand of Jim Hopson after he introduced her to the audience as the new publisher of The Oklahoman. Hopson had served as the newspaper's interim publisher until Tuesday. Readers of The Oklahoman talked about their daily newspaper's history and hopes for its future Tuesday, Dec. 18, 2018, during a State of the Media luncheon that included frank discussions of the financial challenges facing the newspaper and entire news industry. Photo by Jim Beckel, The Oklahoman. "><figcaption>Kelly Dyer Fry smiles as she shakes the hand of Jim Hopson after he introduced her to the audience as the new publisher of The Oklahoman. Hopson had served as the newspaper's interim publisher until Tuesday. Readers of The Oklahoman talked about their daily newspaper's history and hopes for its future Tuesday, Dec. 18, 2018, during a State of the Media luncheon that included frank discussions of the financial challenges facing the newspaper and entire news industry. Photo by Jim Beckel, The Oklahoman. </figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-05fbffe5d67c24a66c675232a009f284.jpg" alt="Photo - J. D. Baker shares feedback from discussion at his table. Holding a microphone is reporter Ben Felder. Baker is a special assistant to Oklahoma City Mayor David Holt. Readers of The Oklahoman talked about their daily newspaper's history and hopes for its future Tuesday, Dec. 18, 2018, during a State of the Media luncheon that included frank discussions of the financial challenges facing the newspaper and entire news industry. Photo by Jim Beckel, The Oklahoman. " title="J. D. Baker shares feedback from discussion at his table. Holding a microphone is reporter Ben Felder. Baker is a special assistant to Oklahoma City Mayor David Holt. Readers of The Oklahoman talked about their daily newspaper's history and hopes for its future Tuesday, Dec. 18, 2018, during a State of the Media luncheon that included frank discussions of the financial challenges facing the newspaper and entire news industry. Photo by Jim Beckel, The Oklahoman. "><figcaption>J. D. Baker shares feedback from discussion at his table. Holding a microphone is reporter Ben Felder. Baker is a special assistant to Oklahoma City Mayor David Holt. Readers of The Oklahoman talked about their daily newspaper's history and hopes for its future Tuesday, Dec. 18, 2018, during a State of the Media luncheon that included frank discussions of the financial challenges facing the newspaper and entire news industry. Photo by Jim Beckel, The Oklahoman. </figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-3be3267c98d0ca1479bbd6f40de53f37.jpg" alt="Photo - Jane Jayroe Gamble shares feedback after a discussion session at her table. At right is Dave Morris, digital managing editor for The Oklahoman. Readers of The Oklahoman talked about their daily newspaper's history and hopes for its future Tuesday, Dec. 18, 2018, during a State of the Media luncheon that included frank discussions of the financial challenges facing the newspaper and entire news industry. Photo by Jim Beckel, The Oklahoman. " title="Jane Jayroe Gamble shares feedback after a discussion session at her table. At right is Dave Morris, digital managing editor for The Oklahoman. Readers of The Oklahoman talked about their daily newspaper's history and hopes for its future Tuesday, Dec. 18, 2018, during a State of the Media luncheon that included frank discussions of the financial challenges facing the newspaper and entire news industry. Photo by Jim Beckel, The Oklahoman. "><figcaption>Jane Jayroe Gamble shares feedback after a discussion session at her table. At right is Dave Morris, digital managing editor for The Oklahoman. Readers of The Oklahoman talked about their daily newspaper's history and hopes for its future Tuesday, Dec. 18, 2018, during a State of the Media luncheon that included frank discussions of the financial challenges facing the newspaper and entire news industry. Photo by Jim Beckel, The Oklahoman. </figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-b4849c714dbb21883b2009e4a0a88e0e.jpg" alt="Photo - Jim Hopson, interim publisher of The Oklahoman, tells guests in the audience that Kelly Dyer Fry has been named the newest publisher of The Oklahoman by the newspaper's owner, Gatehouse Media. Readers of The Oklahoman talked about their daily newspaper's history and hopes for its future Tuesday, Dec. 18, 2018, during a luncheon that included frank discussions of the financial challenges facing the newspaper and entire news industry. Photo by Jim Beckel, The Oklahoman. " title="Jim Hopson, interim publisher of The Oklahoman, tells guests in the audience that Kelly Dyer Fry has been named the newest publisher of The Oklahoman by the newspaper's owner, Gatehouse Media. Readers of The Oklahoman talked about their daily newspaper's history and hopes for its future Tuesday, Dec. 18, 2018, during a luncheon that included frank discussions of the financial challenges facing the newspaper and entire news industry. Photo by Jim Beckel, The Oklahoman. "><figcaption>Jim Hopson, interim publisher of The Oklahoman, tells guests in the audience that Kelly Dyer Fry has been named the newest publisher of The Oklahoman by the newspaper's owner, Gatehouse Media. Readers of The Oklahoman talked about their daily newspaper's history and hopes for its future Tuesday, Dec. 18, 2018, during a luncheon that included frank discussions of the financial challenges facing the newspaper and entire news industry. Photo by Jim Beckel, The Oklahoman. </figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-5241e8bbe64fa651abedc89d20151971.jpg" alt="Photo - The Oklahoman's Opinion Editor Owen Canfield, left, points someone out to former Gov. George Nigh before the event started. Readers of The Oklahoman talked about their daily newspaper's history and hopes for its future Tuesday, Dec. 18, 2018, during a luncheon that included frank discussions of the financial challenges facing the newspaper and entire news industry. Photo by Jim Beckel, The Oklahoman. " title="The Oklahoman's Opinion Editor Owen Canfield, left, points someone out to former Gov. George Nigh before the event started. Readers of The Oklahoman talked about their daily newspaper's history and hopes for its future Tuesday, Dec. 18, 2018, during a luncheon that included frank discussions of the financial challenges facing the newspaper and entire news industry. Photo by Jim Beckel, The Oklahoman. "><figcaption>The Oklahoman's Opinion Editor Owen Canfield, left, points someone out to former Gov. George Nigh before the event started. Readers of The Oklahoman talked about their daily newspaper's history and hopes for its future Tuesday, Dec. 18, 2018, during a luncheon that included frank discussions of the financial challenges facing the newspaper and entire news industry. Photo by Jim Beckel, The Oklahoman. </figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-f1dc7c8294741133dee91f1b4ce75099.jpg" alt="Photo - From left, former Gov. David Walters, Bob Blackburn and an unidentified guest attend the event. Readers of The Oklahoman talked about their daily newspaper's history and hopes for its future Tuesday, Dec. 18, 2018, during a State of the Media luncheon that included frank discussions of the financial challenges facing the newspaper and entire news industry. Photo by Jim Beckel, The Oklahoman. " title="From left, former Gov. David Walters, Bob Blackburn and an unidentified guest attend the event. Readers of The Oklahoman talked about their daily newspaper's history and hopes for its future Tuesday, Dec. 18, 2018, during a State of the Media luncheon that included frank discussions of the financial challenges facing the newspaper and entire news industry. Photo by Jim Beckel, The Oklahoman. "><figcaption>From left, former Gov. David Walters, Bob Blackburn and an unidentified guest attend the event. Readers of The Oklahoman talked about their daily newspaper's history and hopes for its future Tuesday, Dec. 18, 2018, during a State of the Media luncheon that included frank discussions of the financial challenges facing the newspaper and entire news industry. Photo by Jim Beckel, The Oklahoman. </figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-09e8517f2af894afb3a69597c378eded.jpg" alt="Photo - Jane Jayroe Gamble shares feedback after a discussion session at her table. At right is Dave Morris, digital managing editor for The Oklahoman. Readers of The Oklahoman talked about their daily newspaper's history and hopes for its future Tuesday, Dec. 18, 2018, during a State of the Media luncheon that included frank discussions of the financial challenges facing the newspaper and entire news industry. Photo by Jim Beckel, The Oklahoman. " title="Jane Jayroe Gamble shares feedback after a discussion session at her table. At right is Dave Morris, digital managing editor for The Oklahoman. Readers of The Oklahoman talked about their daily newspaper's history and hopes for its future Tuesday, Dec. 18, 2018, during a State of the Media luncheon that included frank discussions of the financial challenges facing the newspaper and entire news industry. Photo by Jim Beckel, The Oklahoman. "><figcaption>Jane Jayroe Gamble shares feedback after a discussion session at her table. At right is Dave Morris, digital managing editor for The Oklahoman. Readers of The Oklahoman talked about their daily newspaper's history and hopes for its future Tuesday, Dec. 18, 2018, during a State of the Media luncheon that included frank discussions of the financial challenges facing the newspaper and entire news industry. Photo by Jim Beckel, The Oklahoman. </figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-3f04b0e12b09cdd63f3629937612b1e8.jpg" alt="Photo - Kelly Dyer Fry and Stan Hupfeld pose for a picture after the event. Fry was named publisher of The Oklahoman earlier in the day. Hupfeld is former president and chief executive officer of Integris Health. Readers of The Oklahoman talked about their daily newspaper's history and hopes for its future Tuesday, Dec. 18, 2018, during a State of the Media luncheon that included frank discussions of the financial challenges facing the newspaper and entire news industry. Photo by Jim Beckel, The Oklahoman. " title="Kelly Dyer Fry and Stan Hupfeld pose for a picture after the event. Fry was named publisher of The Oklahoman earlier in the day. Hupfeld is former president and chief executive officer of Integris Health. Readers of The Oklahoman talked about their daily newspaper's history and hopes for its future Tuesday, Dec. 18, 2018, during a State of the Media luncheon that included frank discussions of the financial challenges facing the newspaper and entire news industry. Photo by Jim Beckel, The Oklahoman. "><figcaption>Kelly Dyer Fry and Stan Hupfeld pose for a picture after the event. Fry was named publisher of The Oklahoman earlier in the day. Hupfeld is former president and chief executive officer of Integris Health. Readers of The Oklahoman talked about their daily newspaper's history and hopes for its future Tuesday, Dec. 18, 2018, during a State of the Media luncheon that included frank discussions of the financial challenges facing the newspaper and entire news industry. Photo by Jim Beckel, The Oklahoman. </figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-e3e625064f190987bb652a49040cdcc1.jpg" alt="Photo - Jim Hopson and Kelly Dyer Fry visit after the event. Hopson has served as interim publisher of The Oklahoman until Tuesday, when he announced Fry would be named the newspaper's new publisher. Readers of The Oklahoman talked about their daily newspaper's history and hopes for its future Tuesday, Dec. 18, 2018, during a State of the Media luncheon that included frank discussions of the financial challenges facing the newspaper and entire news industry. Photo by Jim Beckel, The Oklahoman. " title="Jim Hopson and Kelly Dyer Fry visit after the event. Hopson has served as interim publisher of The Oklahoman until Tuesday, when he announced Fry would be named the newspaper's new publisher. Readers of The Oklahoman talked about their daily newspaper's history and hopes for its future Tuesday, Dec. 18, 2018, during a State of the Media luncheon that included frank discussions of the financial challenges facing the newspaper and entire news industry. Photo by Jim Beckel, The Oklahoman. "><figcaption>Jim Hopson and Kelly Dyer Fry visit after the event. Hopson has served as interim publisher of The Oklahoman until Tuesday, when he announced Fry would be named the newspaper's new publisher. Readers of The Oklahoman talked about their daily newspaper's history and hopes for its future Tuesday, Dec. 18, 2018, during a State of the Media luncheon that included frank discussions of the financial challenges facing the newspaper and entire news industry. Photo by Jim Beckel, The Oklahoman. </figcaption></figure>
Randy Ellis

For the past 30 years, staff writer Randy Ellis has exposed public corruption and government mismanagement in news articles. Ellis has investigated problems in Oklahoma's higher education institutions and wrote stories that ultimately led to two... Read more ›

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